Temporary World Trade Center PATH Station
Cost: $253 million
The restoration of the PATH station and train service at
the World Trade Center was not a simple construction job.
The first public space to open at the site since the towers
fell on Sept. 11 was an emotional job as well.
The temporary station, open-air and without many of the customer
amenities maintained by its former self, is bare and simple
but entirely functional. It opened for its first riders -
and applause - again on Nov. 23, more than two years after
it was destroyed in the terrorist attacks.
The $323 million reconstruction was the final portion of
the Port Authority of New York and New Jersey's $566 million
program to bring PATH service back to New Jersey and Lower
Manhattan as soon as possible after the disaster.
Before Sept. 11, the PATH served more than 260,000 passengers
daily between New York and New Jersey, with nearly 67,000
of those passengers boarding at the World Trade Center. Now,
the PATH has only 180,000 users.
Before it could get those users back on the train, the Port
Authority had to do some extreme damage control. The PATH
tunnels between Lower Manhattan and Jersey City were flooded
by broken water and sewer lines, which destroyed the infrastructure
within the tunnels. In January 2002, after the tunnels had
been blocked and flooded for three months, a partnership between
Yonkers Contracting Co. Inc., Tully Construction Co. Inc.
and A.J. Pegno Construction Co., was awarded the responsibility
for bringing the PATH back to life.
Because of the tight time frame and need to get the trains
up and running again, the team began building immediately
without the usual year-long design processes and preconstruction
work. It also went through a number of different methods before
settling on building using roadheaders, rock cutting machines
typically used in coal mines.
Heavy construction on the actual tunnels was completed in
An actual station also had to be reconstructed. The new station
is in the footprint and almost an exact image of the old one,
with five tracks, three platforms and a huge escalator to
bring passengers onto the cars.
But rather than emerging from their ride into a shopping
concourse, passengers now exit street level under a gleaming
canopy. There is also now a series of elevators at the station
to ensure that it is compliant with the Americans with Disabilities
By necessity perhaps more than by design, the new station
features fiberglass panels with photographs of the history
of the PATH station, exposed steel beams and metal deck. The
bare, simple structure keeps the site flexible but also marks
the mood of change and rebuilding in the area.
The development adjacent to the station and the coming of
the permanent station are being heralded as the Grand Central
of Lower Manhattan.
Soon to replace the temporary PATH station is the $2 billion
World Trade Center Transportation Hub, designed by Spanish
architect Santiago Calatrava and expected to be completed
in 2009. The new hub will feature a freestanding grand pavilion
with a glass ceiling with glass and steel wings to rise 150
ft. from the ground.
It has the capacity to ultimately serve more than 80,000
PATH riders daily and millions of tourists annually. It is
expected to install pedestrian connections that will significantly
improve access to PATH, ferries and subway lines across Lower
Manhattan, which will eventually be able to support 250,000
Most important, it will connect with the World Financial
Center and the Metropolitan Transportation Authority's proposed
Fulton Street Transit Center and might include a direct rail
service to the area airports.
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